Monday’s horse racing tips come from the three jump meetings taking place, at Kempton Park, Ludlow and Musselburgh.
“Tip of the Day” - Grivetana (3.25pm Kempton) - 9/4 with bet365
Yet to fulfil her potential since joining the Paul Nicholls’ stable, the mount of 3lb claimer Angus Cheleda should improve enough from her first run of the season to take this conditional jockeys’ handicap hurdle off bottom weight.
2.45pm Ludlow, 2m - Court Royale (Next Best)
After winning his first two starts of the season at Plumpton and Worcester, the Chris Gordon-trained Only Money looks now, off a career-high mark of 123, to be in the grip of the handicapper following his third at Aintree last time. One place behind Only Money in that race was today’s top weight Sir Tivo, another who may need a little more help from the handicapper before adding to his seven victories over fences to date.
Despite the long wait for a winner finally coming in Haydock’s finale on Saturday, the Venetia Williams stables’ Desque De L’Isle is best watched after putting in a dire round of jumping at Fontwell earlier in the month. While Dan Skelton’s Ridgeway also failed in the jumping department when pulling-up at Hereford on his second run over fences.
This gives the nine-year-old bottom weight COURT ROYALE an excellent opportunity to add to his Ffos Las victory of two weeks ago. The mount of Adam Wedge has proved a fine servant for the Evan Williams stable, winning three times over both hurdles and fences. Beaten three quarters of a length by the now 146-rated Before Midnight at Chepstow last year, the son of Court Cave is more than capable of taking a race of this nature off a mark of only 105.
3.25pm Kempton, 2m - Grivetana (Nap)
An impressive winner of a maiden hurdle at Cagnes-Sur-Mer last December, the Ditcheat stable of Paul Nicholls looked to have a potential Triumph Hurdle candidate on their hands when the four-year-old filly GRIVETANA joined the team back in January.
However, the daughter of No Risk At All has so far failed to live up the promise of that French victory, recording only one minor success in a Chepstow novice hurdle from four starts to date. Second in a conditional jockeys’ handicap hurdle at Newbury on her reappearance, the mount of 3lb claimer Angus Cheleda looked as if she would come on for that run and off her current mark of 121, and in receipt of weight from all of her rivals, the selection is expected to open her account for the season.
With that win in France coming on very soft ground, any further easing in the ground at Kempton will be to the advantage of Grivetana, who could have most to fear from the consistent Swaffham Bulbeck. Stuart Edmunds’ eight-year-old has been running well in defeat recently and has dropped to a mark 5lb lower than when winning at Newcastle last year for former trainer Brian Ellison.
3.35pm Musselburgh, 3m - Arnica (Each Way) (Longshot)
Despite having his first start for 13 months, it could be worth taking a chance on the fitness of the Nick Alexander-trained ARNICA (e.w.) in what looks to be a very weak Class 5 three mile handicap hurdle. The stable has had two winners from its last six runners as I write so, hopefully, the mount of 5lb claimer Bruce Lynn will be straight enough to do himself justice in a race that shouldn’t take too much winning.
The nine-year-old was sent off favourite for a similar race over course and distance at the beginning of last year, beating all bar winner Bullion Boss with the rest of the field well behind. The gelding also finished runner-up at Perth last April from a rating of 102. If able to reproduce that level of form, the selection has every chance of opening his account over hurdles at the 12th attempt. Brian Ellion’s Kiss My Face and the lightly-weighted My Strong Man are two more with decent claims.
* Odds correct at the time of writing but subject to change.